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Low-light camera comparison between the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge, Galaxy S5, iPhone 6, and HTC One M8

Low-light camera comparison between the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge, Galaxy S5, iPhone 6, and HTC One M8
Two days ago, we showed you how the Samsung Galaxy S6 and the HTC One M8 fared against each other in Samsung's own low-light box setup (which is actually a small composition within and two holes big enough for a smartphone camera to peek in and take a picture). In that exact test, Samsung asked us not to use any flash and also make use of several different camera modes.

We simply can't take enough of this low-light camera setup, so we took a few other phones and we returned! This time around, we took an iPhone 6, an HTC One M8, a Galaxy S5, and, of course, one of the more interesting and well-designed Android flagship of late, the Galaxy S6 edge. The latter, which we expect to perform pretty well in low-light conditions. The reason for this is, naturally, the wide lens of the rear snapper, which has a pretty large aperture of f/1.9, one of the larger in the industry now.

Larger aperture means more light inside the sensor, which leads to better-looking photos - that's on theory, but is the Galaxy S6 edge that good in low-light conditions in real life? Well, check out the test shots that we took and feel free to share your opinion.

Note: The samples right below are full-sized, so you might need to wait a little before they load. Sorry.


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posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:20 9

1. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10409; Member since: 14 May 2012)


Is it me or did the S5 (photo 4) seems to be the best?

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:22 26

6. drunkenjay (Posts: 856; Member since: 11 Feb 2013)


just you. its dark. look at the lamp on the left. you can barely see it.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:27 4

8. dirtydirty00 (Posts: 418; Member since: 21 Jan 2011)


you can barely see any lamp with the iphone

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:52 5

20. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10409; Member since: 14 May 2012)


Had my screen on low brightness. Cranked it up and can say S6 did the best followed by the iPhone 6. S5 beat the M8 surprisingly imo.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:55

37. E.N. (Posts: 2610; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)


Did the best in what? Best to see the lamp? Lol, there are two other objects in the set-up.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 13:15 1

43. KRONeage (Posts: 140; Member since: 17 Apr 2011)


There is a Russian site that did a full comparison, not just a single shot mock up. But what you people who can't understand how advanced Samsung is in Camera Tech. I'll remind that Samsung NX1 is simply stomping all over the Top DSLR competitor's offerings in High End Cameras.

Furthermore.... Samsung is now the largest CMOS sensor maker ahead of Sony. They in fact contract out production of their own CMOS sensors to Samsung. There is one huge difference between all these others and Galaxy S6 camera technology, that's the BEST for low light conditions. That is it's 1.8f lens assembly. You see Samsung designs and makes all of their own lens in house too.

Now that's the real reason S6 will win any comparison to anything from Apple or most every other smartphone maker on the Planet! ;-P

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 17:10 1

52. E.N. (Posts: 2610; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)


Cool story. The lamp looks better on the S6 while the bench looks better on the iPhone. The motorcycle also looks better on the iPhone, but I can see how some people would prefer it on the S6. They're both very good and in the grand scheme of things, the difference is pretty negligible. I'd be satisfied with either picture.

posted on 06 Mar 2015, 15:02

68. KRONeage (Posts: 140; Member since: 17 Apr 2011)


Better get yourself a new pair of glasses. The S6 and Edge Camera's are so much more advanced it's pathetic. Apple hasn't changed the their camera much in 4yrs. Details are bound to suffer in iPhones. We are comparing a high quality optics 1.9 aperture lens design made by Samsung (one of the leading Optics manufacturers on the planet.... haha...) to Apple's, which are all made by Chinese random outsourced inferior "Purple Haze" optics! haha.... Low light comparison can't be good for Apple.... you fool!!!

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:33

9. rantao333 (Posts: 322; Member since: 21 May 2013)


its only you, s6 edge (photo 1) and iphone 6 (photo 2) win here.

posted on 05 Mar 2015, 01:52

62. Mittal (Posts: 493; Member since: 14 Dec 2011)


yea.. rantao333 is the sheriff here

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:35

11. majp89 (Posts: 166; Member since: 18 Jun 2013)


Just in color reproduction...I feel like the S6's detail is fantastic and unparalleled, but white balance and colors seem a bit washed out. Still going to give the phone a whirl.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:38

15. FluffyBled (Posts: 444; Member since: 10 Sep 2014)


Nah ... it's the 2nd best after the s6 since the other two are to noisy

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 11:03 2

38. RizwanYaqoob (Posts: 27; Member since: 14 Dec 2013)


Go home, you're drunk

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 15:33

48. joevsyou (Posts: 666; Member since: 28 Feb 2015)


overall, does look like the better picture lol. but this is for the low light test

posted on 05 Mar 2015, 00:36

59. sticker (Posts: 37; Member since: 24 Feb 2015)


S5 with tint issue?

posted on 05 Mar 2015, 01:49

61. Mittal (Posts: 493; Member since: 14 Dec 2011)


Me thinks S5 the best too

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:20 4

2. lalalaman (Posts: 627; Member since: 19 Aug 2013)


im the only one who is waiting for LG G4?

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:53 12

21. Kakarotto (Posts: 251; Member since: 07 Dec 2010)


...yes.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:10 1

25. bodzio1809 (Posts: 356; Member since: 28 Aug 2013)


If they will fix screen quality, performance and battery life I will get G4 :-)

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:21 1

30. FluffyBled (Posts: 444; Member since: 10 Sep 2014)


They should fix the whole phone that means!

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:41 2

35. bodzio1809 (Posts: 356; Member since: 28 Aug 2013)


Nah. G3 got very good camera, great speaker(louder than m8) and great design. I like also LG UI and option to choose apps where you want to hide buttons.

posted on 05 Mar 2015, 00:59

60. hipnotika (Posts: 353; Member since: 06 Mar 2013)


laggy ui :S

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 12:14

42. LGisgood (Posts: 833; Member since: 23 Jun 2012)


LG G3 BEST Smartphone of 2014!
LG G4 BEST Smartphone of 2015!......

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 19:08

57. alexthe10 (Posts: 21; Member since: 13 May 2014)


I'm right behind you using The G3 now but we can't denied the s6 edge has caught my attention of G4 is not near the s6 I'm dumping LG I chose the G3 over the s5 due to touchwiz

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:20 2

3. drunkenjay (Posts: 856; Member since: 11 Feb 2013)


s6 is alot brighter imo

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:20 2

4. phenomium (Posts: 6; Member since: 26 Nov 2013)


And what you are afraid to show this test with Nokia Lumia 1020,930 ,I think I know the answer ;)

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:35 9

12. TyrionLannister (unregistered)


Yeah, the're old and irrelevant here.

People want a great phone that can shoot good pics, not a great camera that can call.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:46 2

18. phenomium (Posts: 6; Member since: 26 Nov 2013)


Lumia 930 is for you ONLY camera?

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:04 5

24. TyrionLannister (unregistered)


Pretty much yeah. It's battery life and limited storage makes it pretty much useless. 1520 is nice though.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 12:01

41. phenomium (Posts: 6; Member since: 26 Nov 2013)


Low battery life hehe hpics.li/4a0a175 , you are a samsung funboy

posted on 05 Mar 2015, 10:02

64. elitewolverine (Posts: 4989; Member since: 28 Oct 2013)


Regularly get 16hrs a day out of my 930 and limited storage? 10TB of online storage has made it useless to worry about sdcards. I have over a hundred apps on this thing and i still have 12gb left.

posted on 05 Mar 2015, 11:03

67. TyrionLannister (unregistered)


I have 16 GB of music library on my phone and equally much docs. I also like to have about 10 GB of movies. I'm sure it won't fit in that phone.

Regarding battery life, 16 hours mean nothing. I have seen it perform terribly in battery tests. I use my phone heavily compared to others so i won't get that much battery.

However, Lumia 1520 has none of these issues bit it's freaking huge.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:37

14. Awalker (Posts: 1363; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)


Here's an article comparing a bunch of phone cameras:

http://www.phonearena.com/news/And-the-best-phone-camera-is...-pro-photogs-rank-Note-4-iPhone-6-Z3-Lumia-1020-and-more_id66752

posted on 05 Mar 2015, 10:03

65. elitewolverine (Posts: 4989; Member since: 28 Oct 2013)


It compared auto only, this is a far better comparo imo.

http://fortheloveoftech.com/2014/10/24/samsung-galaxy-note-4-vs-nokia-lumia-1020-camera-comparison-the-gold-standard-test/

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:22 12

5. RizwanYaqoob (Posts: 27; Member since: 14 Dec 2013)


iPhone 6 performed better, IMO.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:34 5

10. tech2 (Posts: 3318; Member since: 26 Oct 2012)


I think GS6 and iPhone were on par on this one but I'll give GS6 the crown here since it has a wider FOV and aspect ratio is 16:9 as against 4:3 of Apple's.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 17:23

53. Furbal (Posts: 882; Member since: 22 Sep 2012)


the bench in the iphone pic looks grainy as hell on my monitor, the gs6 looks a bit smoother

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:36

13. seven7dust (unregistered)


think the s6 is slightly brighter , but the iPhone colors look more accurate .

more interesting to do a portrait shot in a room with normal light kinda like a restaurant , I always struggle to get good shots in bars/restaurants.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 18:06

54. tedkord (Posts: 9850; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)


We can't know which colours are more accurate, we didn't see the scene live.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:44

17. saveferris (Posts: 27; Member since: 11 Jul 2014)


If your measure of better is to barely see the light post (Iphone) as opposed to actually seeing the light post (S6) ....then yes the Iphone performed better.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:18

29. tech-lover (Posts: 108; Member since: 20 Feb 2015)


Check your eyes with doctor..! It's obvious that S6 did better. It's more detailed and brighter.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:25 2

7. Nexus4lifes (Posts: 155; Member since: 13 Feb 2014)


Please add the current KING - Galaxy Note 4.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:48

19. Rhinoface (Posts: 176; Member since: 05 Dec 2014)


Lumia 1020/1520*

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 14:25

46. Nexus4lifes (Posts: 155; Member since: 13 Feb 2014)


Hahaha they are a story of the past Note 4 is the current KING period.

posted on 05 Mar 2015, 10:04

66. elitewolverine (Posts: 4989; Member since: 28 Oct 2013)


period? lol no

http://fortheloveoftech.com/2014/10/24/samsung-galaxy-note-4-vs-nokia-lumia-1020-camera-comparison-the-gold-standard-test/

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:43 4

16. nctx77 (Posts: 1636; Member since: 03 Sep 2013)


Did anybody at this event bring an iPhone 6 plus? It has OIS and is better in low light. They keep comparing the regular iPhone. With that said, the iPhone 6 did a good job. It actually took a better pic, but was slightly darker. The S6 is brighter, but washed out a bit.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:59 1

23. alouden (unregistered)


This is a fair point. Why not compare to the IPhone 6 Plus?

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:14

26. E.N. (Posts: 2610; Member since: 25 Jan 2009)


iPhone 6 shares the same target audience as the S6

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:16

28. Slammer (Posts: 1515; Member since: 03 Jun 2010)


My guess is that they used a tripod. If this is the case, OIS would not have improved the shots.

John B.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:15 1

27. miket1737 (Posts: 2343; Member since: 17 Mar 2013)


Yeah i dont know why they keep using 6 and not 6 Plus, OIS would absolutely help here

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 15:44 1

50. willard12 (Posts: 1513; Member since: 04 Jul 2012)


Why wouldn't Apple just give the iphone 6 OIS?

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:54

36. Awalker (Posts: 1363; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)


Since the S6 is competing with the iPhone 6 most people decided to bring the iPhone 6. If it was a Note event they would have brought the 6+.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 09:58 1

22. yoosufmuneer (Posts: 1455; Member since: 14 Feb 2015)


Is it me or does these Pics look cartoonish.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:30 1

31. wildfiregt (Posts: 165; Member since: 10 Jun 2013)


Why do these pics have bokeh and look like miniatures ?
They doesn't look like a real picture at all

posted on 05 Mar 2015, 03:44

63. Beijendorf (Posts: 339; Member since: 27 Aug 2013)


Because they are photographed in a small box, as outlined in the text?

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:39

32. miket1737 (Posts: 2343; Member since: 17 Mar 2013)


iphone 6 did clearly the best, better color rendition and no orange glare in the photo like the S6...cmon fanboys thats so obvious that you can see that, no orange glare in the i6 photo

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 18:07

55. tedkord (Posts: 9850; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)


I see no glare in any of the picture. I do see better detail and clarity in the S6 photo.

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:40

33. alexkeuano (Posts: 1; Member since: 04 Mar 2015)


BS. Someone photoed a magazine page

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 14:41

47. wildfiregt (Posts: 165; Member since: 10 Jun 2013)


that's also my point, i think they just pictures of an existing picture

posted on 04 Mar 2015, 10:41

34. Greenlantern (Posts: 7; Member since: 03 Mar 2015)


iPhone and GS6 are really close....the iPhone seems to be slightly sharper though.

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